When it comes to long lasting tread life, the top contenders are Michelin Defender vs Continental Truecontact, but they have other features that would attract loyal customers.
Continental Truecontact is one of the market leaders in wet traction, while Michelin Defender tires are commendable on dry roads. They are both usable in light snow. They both have noise reduction ability, but TrueContact has a slight edge in overall comfort.
|Snow and Ice||Both brands are usable in light snow.|
|Noise/Ride Quality||Slightly Noisy||Winner|
|Price||Expensive||Cheaper by $6-17|
Table of Contents
What Are They?
1. Michelin Defender
In general, the Michelin Defender line takes pride in offering exceptional comfort, top quality tread life, and low-noise operation. It is composed of three long-lasting tires:
|Tire Model||Distinct Feature|
|Michelin Defender 2||Promise 2 additional years of tire longevity compared to competitors|
|Michelin Defender LTX M/S||Reinforced tires with Evertread compound to endure harsh conditions|
|Michelin Defender T+H||Offer outstanding mileage support through silica-enhanced tread compound and zigzag sipes built with Intellisipe technology|
2. Continental TrueContact
Continental Truecontact is an all-season tire with a 90,000 miles warranty, but Consumer Reports projected that its strongest mileage support can last up to 60,000 miles only.
In general, Continental tires have minimal noise on the road because they reduce noise vibrations through Comfort Ride Technology. They are also equipped with quick view indicators that alert drivers when the tire 1) needs alignment or 2) no longer safe to use in dry, wet or snow conditions.
In 2018, Continental Truecontact was replaced by the Continental Truecontact Tour. The German tire maker aimed at minimizing Truecontact Tour’s road noise by 50% and enhancing its tread life by 23%.
Similarities: Michelin Defender & Continental Truecontact
Two tires from the Defender line and the Truecontact tire serve the same types of vehicles. The Defender 2, Defender T +H and Truecontact are standard touring tires. Generally, they are great for daily driving on wet, dry or snow roads.
|Continental Truecontact||Standard Touring All-Season||Coupes, sedans, minivans and crossovers|
|Michelin Defender 2||Standard Touring All-Season||Coupes, sedans, crossover, SUVs and minivans|
|Michelin Defender T+H||Standard Touring All-Season||Coupes, family sedans, minivans, and small crossovers|
Meanwhile, Michelin’s Defender LTX M/S is an all-season tire designed for highway use. It is suitable for commercial vans, light duty trucks, and SUVs.
Differences/Pros and Cons
Since the LTX slightly differs from other models in usage, we won’t focus on it in our comparison below.
1. Warranty & Mileage
Continental Truecontact has a higher mileage promise than the two Defender tires by 10,000 miles.
|Continental TrueContact||90,000 miles|
|Michelin Defender 2||80,000 miles|
|Michelin Defender T +H||80,000 miles|
Based on the test conducted by Consumer Reports, Michelin’s Defender T +H can last up to 90,000 miles, while the Truecontact has a projected mileage of 60,000 miles. The Defender2, meanwhile, may last up to 94,400 miles.
Winner: Continental for warranty and Michelin for mileage
2. UTQG rating
Michelin’s Defender 2 lasts longer because it wears out more slowly than the Defender T+ H and Truecontact. However, its grip in wet conditions is lower than the other two.
|Michelin Defender 2||840||B||B|
|Michelin Defender T+H||820||A||B|
Winner: Michelin Defender
3. Wet performance
The Truecontact excels in wet traction because of responsive steering and handling. One can easily regain control when the tires skid on slippery roads. Because of Eco-plus technology, the Continental tire can provide ultimate wet braking grip.
Defender tires are no slouch regarding wet traction either, but the T+H has a slight edge over the Defender2. The wet traction level of both Michelin tires is not stellar enough to beat the TrueContact.
Winner: Continental Truecontact
4. Snow and Ice
For the most part, all-season tires are not designed for severe snow and ice. They cover the warmer months well but their grip is not as strong as summer tires.
Needless to say, based on reviews on snow performance, the Truecontact, Defender 2, and Defender T+H are decent enough to handle light snow.
None really has a huge advantage over another in this area.
5. Dry performance
As mentioned, the three tires behave excellently on dry roads.
The Defender 2 is great at handling S corners because of its fast steering response, while the Defender T+H displays quality braking, cornering and stability even in tight turns.
That said, Continental’s TrueContact wins this category.
6. Noise/Comfort/Ride Quality
Continental’s Truecontact can absorb bumps with minimal road noise, but groans a little on smooth asphalt.
Similarly, the Defender 2 makes little noise when driving on smooth or rough pavements. The same thing applies to Defender T+H.
Overall, Continental’s Truecontact has a more well-managed noise level and delivers a more comfortable ride among the three tires with a very slight margin of difference.
Winner: Continental TrueContact
Continental’s Truecontact is the cheapest tire in this comparison. The Defender tires are $6-17 more expensive than the German tire.
|Michelin Defender 2||$190|
|Michelin Defender T+H||$179|
That said, if you find TrueContact still expensive for your budget but want the same tread wear promise and performance, Discount Tire offers the Continental Control Contact Tour A/S Plus at $166.
This all-season touring tire replaced the Continental ControlContact Tour AS.
Winner: Continental Truecontact
How many ply is Michelin Defender?
Michelin’s Defender LTX M/S is a 10-ply tire while Michelin’s Defender 2 and Michelin Defender T+H carry an SL or standard load range. They have four-ply bodies.
Is Continental True Contact a quiet tire?
Continental’s TrueContact tire is not completely quiet. Expect minimal noise on smooth pavement and more audible impact on bumpy rides.
What is the difference between Continental True Contact vs Control Contact A/S Plus?
Control Contact A/S Plus is an exclusive tire offering of Discount Tire that has a five-rib tread design compared to Truecontact’s four-rib tread design.
Which is better, Michelin Crossclimate 2 or Michelin Defender T +H?
Michelin’s Crossclimate 2 carries a 3PMSF symbol, so it has a snow and ice traction advantage over Michelin’s Defender T+H.
Crossclimate 2 is a grand touring all season tire designed to withstand all-weather conditions, while the Defender T+H is a long lasting standard touring tire with a perfect balance of longevity and comfort.
After comparing the Michelin Defender Vs Continental Truecontact, we learned that the latter is the cheaper tire option with the best wet weather traction. But when it comes to longevity, Michelin’s Defender T+H is the ideal choice.
If you are unsure of which tire to buy, especially when you add the Michelin Premier or X Tour A/S T+H into the mix, Reddit and Tire Rack provide insightful information, so don’t hesitate to have a look there.
Want to know more about Continental vs Michelin vs Goodyear tires? Feel free to check out our other discussions here.